Monday, January 18, 2010

Whooping Crane.. really Tall

The Whooping Crane, the tallest North American bird, is an endangered species named for its whooping sound and call. Along with the Sand hill Crane; it is one of only two crane species found in North America. The whooping cranes lifespan is estimated to be 22 to 24 years in the wild. There is an estimate of only 250 left in the wild.
Adult whooping cranes are white with a red crown and a long, dark, pointed bill. Immature whooping cranes are pale brown. While in flight, their long necks are kept straight and their long dark legs trail behind. Adult whooping cranes' black wing tips are visible during flight
They stand nearly 1.5 meters (5 feet) with a wingspan of 2.3 meters (7.5 feet). Males weigh on average 7.0 kg (17 lb), while females weigh about 6.0 kg (14 lb).The only other very large, long-legged white birds in North America are: the Great Egret, which is over a foot shorter and one-seventh the weight of this crane; the Great White Heron, which is a morph of the Great Blue Heron in Florida; and the Wood Stork. All three other birds are at least 30% smaller than the whooping crane. Herons and storks are also quite different in structure from the crane.

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